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7 days
  • self guided walk
  • 6 nights B&B/Guesthouse
  • 6 Breakfasts





Trip Code: WCZ

Trip highlights

  • Centre based walking holiday
  • Classic English landscapes of the Lake District
  • Based in the vibrant market town of Keswick
  • Interesting peaks and viewpoints
  • Boat rides on the Derwentwater
  • Waterfalls & woodlands

Keswick is a bustling market town established in 1276 located in the north of the English Lake District and dubbed the adventure capital of the UK. Beatrix Potter found the inspiration of several of her books here and other famous visitors before you are the Romantic poets Southey, Coleridge and Wordsworth. It is here, right at the heart of Cumbria, that we have found for you the perfect guesthouse to use as a base for a series of scenic walks. Most of them circular, they offer a wide range of easier as well as harder options to explore the surrounding fells and Derwentwater Lake. Highlights of walking in this part of the Lake District include the classic English landscapes, unforgettable viewpoints and attractive woodlands & waterfalls. Plan your visit during the annual, family friendly Keswick Mountain Festival for a mix of outdoor activities and live music. And if, for whatever reason, you or some of your fellow walkers would like to take a rest for a day, there's a lot to see and enjoy in this pretty town. In the evenings, try local Cumbrian specialties such as Cumberland sausage or Tattie Pot (a rich stew including black pudding) or opt for an international meal as there is no shortage of choice.

Trip Grading

More info about grading system

Traveller Rating


Make your own way to Keswick located at the centre of the northern lakes and sits in a splendid situation between the shores of Derwent Water and the bulking peak called Skiddaw. It's a bustling market town with agricultural and industrial heritage centres around the old Moot Hall, an old court house and jail which is now a tourist office. It is full of outdoor shops, eateries, an old cinema, a theatre and a pencil museum as graphite was originally discovered up on the fells above and used for marking sheep! There is quite a lot to see and do even on wet days including boat trips, and of course a wide variety of pubs to frequent. Depending upon what time you arrive you may want to do a short walk up to the beautiful Keswick Stone Circle, a neolithic structure set in the middle of some great panoramas. Accommodation: Keswick for 6 nights at The Edwardene Guesthouse but there are a number B&Bs and guesthouses that we use which are subject to availability at the time of your booking. They are generally 5-15 minutes walk from the Moot Hall in the centre of town. If you wish to upgrade to 4 or 5 * or self-contained properties please contact us.

Meals:  Nil

This walk can be done in most weather conditions, and takes you on a complete perambulation around Derwent Water. The walk can be reduced in length by taking a ferry to one of several points upon the lake. The walk undulates around the side of the water and also follows sections of road where the path does not have direct access to the lake. On the way you should notice the beautiful sculpture of the Centenery Stone in the water. A short diversion takes you to the spectacular (after rain) Lodore Falls. Cross the 'Chinese Bridge' at the southern side of the lake and return to Keswick via the cafe and walled gardens at Lingholm, a home of Beatrix Potter. There is some attractive mixed woodland to pass through on the way and perhaps on a really warm day you may want to take a swim in one of the quieter little bays or beaches on the south western side of the lake.

Meals:  B

This 931-metre (3,054 ft) fell is the sixth-highest mountain in England. It dominates the skyline of Keswick and this part of the northern lakes. It is the simplest of the Lake District mountains of this height to ascend. The walk climbs over a side peak called Little Man which can be bypassed but offers the best views down to Derwent Water. If it is clear the broad summit ridge offers views to Brasenthwaite Lake and to the remote fells to the north. Although it is easier to descend the way that you have come, there is a steep descent down to the villages to the south of Skiddaw and then a cross country trail back into Keswick. If the weather is bad on the peaks but you still have views there is a shorter route up to the famous viewpoint called Latrigg, from this small side peak you can continue the walk as a circuit taking in beautiful Brundholme woods returning to Keswick. (10 km /6.1 miles, 2.5 hours)

Meals:  B

A lovely ‘figure of 8’ shaped walk which although ascends to the popular Castlerigg Stone Circle, soon takes minor trails to the unfrequented St.John’s in the Vale, a very pretty valley with a small church. Following the valleyside above St. John’s Beck, a beautiful lane is followed through woods and pastures passing Low Bridge Farm where quite often teas are available. Then it's up to cross the A591 road where if you want to shorten the walk you can take the bus back to Keswick. Crossing the road you then take a minor road around the head of Thirlmere before taking tracks via Shoulthwaite and Shaw Bank to retrace an earlier section of path in reverse before diverting across fields and into the trees of ‘Springs Wood’ before returning to Keswick. If you want a longer walk, a short bus ride takes you into Borrowdale, then you follow a low to medium level linear walk along the Cumbria Way. You will have the chance to dawdle along and hopefully enjoy the scenery. From Rosthwaite you join the beautiful River Derwent which we more or less follow on its course to the beautiful island studded lake of Derwentwater. The Cumbria Way clings to the valley bottom and Derwentwater lakeshore. It may be possible to stop for a coffee break or early lunch at a cafe in Grange-in-Borrowdale. There are some attractive places to picnic along the shore of Derwentwater. You can extend the walk by making a diversion from Hawse End to climb the very beautiful little peak with the delightful name of Catbells.

Meals:  B

This beautiful walk is probably the best of the holiday and should be reserved for a good day. Newlands is a hidden gem of farms and pastures tucked away behind the popular peak called Catbells and a world away from the bustle of Keswick. After a pause for breath and to drink in the views, the walk then continues up via Maiden Moor to High Spy. From here you follow cairns over moors and down to Dale Head Tarn then up steeply to Dale Head at the head of the Newlands Valley. After a short flirtation with the head of Buttermere, the course changes and it is steeply down through the heather and bracken via the Hindscarth Ridge into the Newlands Valley. Off the fells you walk through farms into Little Town – hardly even a village! There is no public transport into the valley and no pub although there is normally one farm which has a licensed café towards the end of the walk. From here you can either walk out or phone for a taxi from Keswick. There are options to get public transport further on, or you could just walk back to Keswick via the village of Portinscale.

Meals:  B

After a short bus ride to the hamlet of Scales, this beautiful walk encompasses the peak of Blencathra 868 m (2,848 ft). Via a remote path near Scales Fell and takes you to the oval water feature of Scales Tarn, hidden in the upper part of a little valley. From here a fairly short but steep climb takes you to the summit, from where you follow the broad ridge all the way along to Blease Fell at the ridge end. Here you switch back down fairly easily to the Blencathra centre. Here it is easy to walk back the last few miles via the woodland road through Brundholme Wood or by following the railway track back into town. Otherwise you can instead head down to the pretty village of Threlkeld where there are a couple of pubs and a coffee shop. A bus passes through every hour and can take you back to Keswick.

Meals:  B



The map and elevation chart are for illustrative purposes only and meant to provide general guidelines.
On self guided trips, actual route information provided before departure will be more detailed.


  • 6 nights in a comfortable Keswick B&B or Guesthouse on a twin share basis with ensuite facilities
  • 6 breakfasts
  • Route note and map package (1 pack per room booked)
  • GPX tracks for listed walks

  • 6 dinners, lunches and beverages
  • Entrance Fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Travel to the start and from the end point of the tour
  • Personal expenses such as laundry and phone calls
  • Bus, taxi and boat transport that may be used in conjunction with the walks
  • A supplement will apply if you are travelling solo or book a single room
  • Guide - this is a self guided holiday




We grade this tour as moderate to challenging (grade 4). Anyone used to hill / mountain hiking with a daily height gain / loss of around 3,300 feet (1000metres) per day on some at times steep and rough tracks should find the tour within their capability. The walks average between 5-7 hours walking time. There are a couple of shorter and longer options. Care is needed underfoot on some of the trails, although in general the paths are fairly broad, there are in some places, especially at viewpoint areas that could be subjectively exposed for some people. Some of the walks can be shortened as desired. Reasonable navigational ability is required especially if you intend walking in poor weather.

Departure dates

Daily 01 March - 15 October


Please note that minor changes to your 2024 itinerary may apply.

Want to organise a private group?

Fundraising events, sporting groups, family treats; learn how you can organise a Private Group from just 6 travellers.

Priceper person from


Options & Supplements*
  • Single/Solo Traveller SupplementUSD$80
*Prices listed are per person

Frequently Asked Questions

The walks are designed mainly as loops to be done from Keswick returning to the town. But there are options such as Blencathra, and Borrowdale walks where a local bus would be used. You can also use the Lake Derwent ferries to take you to the start of the Catbells and Newlands Valley Walks

Yes strong walkers could get the ascent done, but it is a long day and it is better if you have a car, although it can just about be done using the bus to and from Seatoller - assuming that you can get back to Seatoller for the last bus! You then have another mile along the road to Seathwaite to start the walk and also back at the end.

There are some nice walks around Derwent Water and St. John in the Vale

Belncathra, the Skiddaw fells, Cat bells and Maiden Moor

Mainline trains to Penrith then hourly bus to Keswick. there are also buses to Keswick from other places in the lakes such as Grasmere

Plenty of shops, pubs and restaurants, a craft / food market twice a week, gardens and lake setting, boat rides, and the Derwnt Pencil Museum

Trip reviews

Why travel with us

Making Europe Affordable

We offer different levels of accommodation and comfort so that even the most budget conscious can treat themselves to active holidays on Europe's most celebrated tracks and trails. Our trips are great value for money because you only pay for what you want.  

Self-Guided Specialists

Our wide range of self-guided itineraries embody the UTracks philosophy of exploring Europe your way. We handle the logistics so all that's left for you to do is enjoy exploring Europe at your own pace. Most depart daily with a minimum of two people, meaning maximum flexibility.

Our Wide Range

With close to 400 trips in almost 50 countries, including the largest range of bike & boat holidays in Europe, we're confident that we can organise an Alps walk, Camino de Santiago or Via Francigena experience, Food Lovers' trip or a tour in a lesser-known pocket of Europe that you will love. 

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